The LGBTQ Student Leadership Award is given by the Commission for LGBT People to a student who demonstrates a commitment to advancing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues on campus.
Hannah Roberts (they/them) is a fourth-year social work major who has dedicated their career towards queer liberation and combating LGBTQ+ homelessness in the south. They act as a Pride Center intern, resident assistant for Bryant’s Bridge, a home for LGBTQ+ youth who have experienced homelessness, and co-chair of Sexual Empowerment and Awareness at Tennessee.
What does being a Volunteer mean to you? How has UT empowered you to make a difference in a way you might not have imagined elsewhere?
To me, being a Volunteer means being willing to sit down and have difficult conversations in our schools and workplaces to make them safer, more inclusive spaces for queer people. UT is not traditionally seen as a safe space for LGBTQ+ people and our Campus Pride Index rating reflects that. Through my time here as a queer trans student I have taken part in a lot of equity-focused endeavors to combat this. I have learned what advocacy and active allyship truly mean, and why dedication to continuous efforts rather than one-and-done efforts is important. I am eager to see how UT admin, faculty, and future Vols continue this mission in the future.